Contractors reluctant to complete works as revised estimates are not approved
The work on Rajagopuram and Mallikarjuna Mahamandpam has come to a grinding halt due to delay in approval of revised estimates by the State government.
The contractors have virtually stopped the works under the garb that the revised estimates are not approved.
Sri Durga Malleswara Swamvarla Devasthanam authorities have sent the revised estimates to the government for its approval some time ago. The temple authorities initially estimated that the Rajagopuram would cost Rs.9.8 crore. Later, it was estimated that it would cost between Rs. 15 crore and Rs.16 crore.
Likewise, the cost of the Mahamandapam was estimated at Rs. 20.5 crore initially, and now it has escalated to Rs. 22.5 crore. The contractors fear the temple might not be able to clear the bills if the government does not approve the revised estimates.
There is an escalation of 8 to 10 per cent in the cost of the two projects for various reasons, including change and approval of designs, sand scarcity, non-availability of skilled labour (for the Rajagopuram). Still uncertainty looms over the ramps for the Mahamandapam though the officials are confident that the Mahamandapam would be constructed as per original design. The government is yet to sanction permission to the ramps, according to sources.
There are divergent views on construction of the ramps. While some oppose it, a few others favour it. Therefore, the department has constituted the committee to study the feasibility and requirement of the ramps. As per the original design, two ramps – exit and entry – would be part of the mandapam. It is estimated that the entry ramp would cost Rs. 8.2 crore and exit ramp Rs. 3.2 crore.
The two structures are unlikely to be complete before Dasara if pace of the work is any indication. The temple authorities have failed to complete the construction of the Mahamandapam by December 2011 as was announced. The temple authorities commenced the works in June 2009, and announced that the mahamandapam would be completed for 2010 Dasara.